As an adult, as a parent, as a teacher for 20 years, I have found that I have been dating myself lately, talking about how different children are today than they were when I was growing up. We jokingly tell our girls to go build a fort when we think they have had too much screen time.
But the reality is, children have changed. They are living in a digital world, learning via a digital platform, and can mostly communicate via technology during this pandemic. Face time, instant messaging, email, google chat, google hangout, zoom calls, email, and the list goes on are the important slang words children use these days to communicate.
I recently had my students listen to the song lyrics “A Million Dreams” from the movie The Greatest Showman. As many of you know, I have been teaching via zoom during this pandemic. It is challenging to say the least to engage students through a digital platform, especially pre pubescent students. However, I have found that song lyrics immediately perk up my 21 students and they are more alert.
After listening to the lyrics, I asked the students a simple question.
What are your dreams after this pandemic?
So, what do children really want this year for Christmas? One would think it would be a computer, new video games, or something materialistic.
Well, here are their dreams, if they could have anything this holiday season.
“To go outside and go for a nice long walk, without wearing a mask.”
“To see my friend without wearing a mask.”
“To go to my cousin's house and visit with him!”
“To travel and not wear a mask.”
“To go to school and see my friends”
“To play a soccer game and not just practice skills”
“To go on a road trip with my grandma and cats”
“To see my friends back home.”
“To see my family”
"I don’t really know what I want this year. It’s not like I can play with anyone. It’s not the gift, it’s the idea to share the gift with a friend."
This was raw, real responses that I collected from my students on a Wednesday morning during school time. We often do not give our youth enough credit. They are not always consumed about gifts and the latest deals that technology has to offer. They miss and they want human connection.
Friends, family, playing outside, human connection.
This digital classroom activity gave me renewed hope for life after the pandemic. Maybe it is all realigning and resetting our minds. I think when this is all said and done, our children will appreciate the act of engaging in school, visiting a friend, traveling to see their family members, and playing. The research has been collected for years on what is developmentally appropriate for children.
Human interaction, conversation, play time. . .
And now the kids were asked. Guess what? That is exactly what they need.
Don’t underestimate the power of our young ones this holiday season. They want more than ever what all of us adults are yearning for. . . Time to be together.
Day 4: Holiday Recipe. If you have stale bread, then this is the recipe for you! Well, stale croissants to be exact!
4 cups of milk
½ cup of sugar
2 tsps of cinnamon
½ tsp of nutmeg
1 tsp of vanilla
6 cups of dried bakery croissants cubed.
1.In a large bowl beat together eggs,milk,sugar,cinnamon,nutmeg and vanilla. Place dry bread cubes in a 9x13 greased baking dish. Pour egg mixture over bread cubes.
2. Bake in a 325 degree oven for 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
3.Cool slightly. Serve warm with rompope liquor or caramel sauce. Makes 12 servings.
Santa Clara Rompope is our Favorite!